JAMES MAY, ONE third of motoring cash-machine Top Gear’s presenting team, has confirmed that he won’t be returning to the show in the wake of main host Jeremy Clarkson’s dismissal last month.
The avuncular May, nicknamed Captain Slow by co-hosts Clarkson and Richard Hammond for his conservative approach to driving, told the Guardian that to continue with the without Clarkson ‘just wouldn’t work’.
“Me and Hammond with a surrogate Jeremy is a non-starter, it just wouldn’t work. That would be lame, or ‘awks’ as young people say,” said the 52-year-old.
It has to be the three of us. You can’t just put a surrogate Jeremy in and expect it to carry on. It would be forced. I don’t believe they would be stupid enough to try that.
What the future holds for May is less clear. While he has said that his time on the motoring show is at an end, that doesn’t mean he’s necessarily done with the BBC as an earlier tweet would seem to confirm.
For the time being, May seems to be enjoying not having anything to do.
“It may just be I don’t do anything,” he said.
With May and Clarkson gone renewed scrutiny is sure to be trained upon whoever takes up the show’s presenting reins.
Clarkson was dismissed from the show after apparently punching producer Oisín Tymon after a day’s filming of the motoring show last month.
Meanwhile, it has emerged this evening that Top Gear’s executive producer Andy Wilman has also quit the show.
Wilman was instrumental, along with Clarkson, in revamping the show from its more staid previous guise when it was close to cancellation 15 years ago.
The BBC has confirmed that Wilman has quit, but denied that his leaving was in any way linked to Clarkson’s dismissal.